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I haven't read all posts in this thread but here is a general comment about task sorting by due date when repeating items are active:
When I have repeating items I do the following to make sure they appear in the correct order after the auto creation of a task. I have made a perspective in PLANNING mode with all items in the main window EXPANDED. Then 2 commands later all is sorted.
command 1: Select all
command 2: Edit-> Sort -> by due date

Does this seem to be a correct approach and if so can someone put an apple script together to automate that.
 
Hi,
I, too, find it aggravating and confusing that sorting methods are distinct for tasks and projects.

My use of the app varies across different projects and contexts. For example, I have a folder of projects referring to swimming pool maintenance. One, "Check Inventory" has a series of repeating tasks. This project has a due date, but the tasks don't. Another project, "Maintenance" does not have a project due date but instead has individual task due dates.

I like to view these projects simultaneously.

It seems that in the 1.1 rev I'll be able to focus on the folder, expand all, select all, edit->sort by due date.

However, it would be nice to be able to use the same sorting controls for both projects and tasks.

Perhaps an additional submenu and an additional toolbar could be added.

Menu:

Edit
-----Sort
----------Sort Project
---------------Sort by...
----------Sort Tasks
---------------Sort by...

Toolbars--as the Project toolbar (aka "View" bar) optionally viewed, so could be the Task toolbar.

The Task toolbar could have the task specific options, like sort.

Regards,
Dave
 
I'm not sure I fully understand your proposal, but I'll comment on why I think the current setup makes sense.

But first, I'll point out that the view bar is by no means only useful in project mode -- if anything, I find it most useful in context mode. Not a single one of my context-based perspectives (from which I do almost all of the actual execution of work, as opposed to planning) has the default view bar settings.

Edit->Sort actually changes your document. The view bar simply changes your view of the data, not the underlying data itself. You can make actions appear in a number of different orders using the view bar, but if you further restrict the view to Next Actions only, they will appear in the same order (as you do them one by one) no matter what the view settings happen to be. Change the ordering via Edit->Sort and that may not be true. They aren't really interchangeable in the general case, and a user interface that led one to think otherwise would not be a good thing, in my opinion. It's pretty clear that when you reach for something under the Edit menu, that you are going to actually alter the document, right? Imagine spending an hour one day carefully planning out a big project with lots of sequential dependencies, getting everything just right, then blowing it all away because you inadvertently selected the one item in some part of the UI that actually changes the document, unlike all of its companions which only change the way the document is displayed?

I guess I should amend my comment in my previous post about improving the current UI to be that I haven't thought of a good way to make it less confusing for those of us (myself included) who learn how to use the program by fiddling with it without first reading (or watching) the documentation. In my opinion, the current behavior makes good sense once one understands that there are two different things going on, but knowing the difference is key, unless your data consists of nothing but parallel projects and single action lists.
 
Well said, whpalmer4. I agree with you completely.

-Dennis
 
I believe Varatron wasn't asking for sorting through EDIT, he just wanted to be able to view by date as well in project mode. (Even though he did say EDIT, permanently resorting by due date was not his main goal)

Take his suggestion, and add it to the view bar (just like grouping is an option in the view bar). View/Sort by project vs. View/Sort by task.

SIMPLE.
 
Sorry WHP, I am going to use your own example to build my case ;)

Imagine you spend HOURS working everything up in OF. Except you are working in Project Mode. You have multiple related projects. You like to look at them all at once to get the bigger picture by project. You spend hours and hours getting things JUST RIGHT. Many of your projects span a year or two, so looking at dates by project is silly/not helpful/pointless. Some of your actions within the projects have dates, some don't. The actions all have different contexts.

Phew... 3 hours later and you have the perfect doc, perfectly sorted. So now, all you want to do is get an overview, looking at the projects at once, the upcoming due dates, to get the bigger picture. Being able to see this bigger picture is part of any project management. But guess what, you CAN'T currently do this in planning mode, without PERMANENTLY resorting everything you just spent hours working on. I am using due dates as my example, but obviously this applies to any of the "view" options.


When you are in "project" head, not "context" head, having to switch to context view, then group by project and sort by date is just plain bad UI. Imagine it were in reverse when you are in Context mode, should you have to go to Planning mode to view and sort? No, of course not, you need to see everything by its context. It doesn't relate to the train of thought you were just in. When you are in Context mode, should you be required to permanently resort the data you entered just to view it a certain way? Of course not.

I can guarantee if OF required a user to switch to Planning Mode to be able to view by date, the boards would be flaming. What we are pointing out here is an oversight in UI, or bad UI, not any change in GTD.


Solution

Right now, the sort view bar has a gray header "sort projects by" followed by sorting options. Add another gray header text header in the drop down after this with "sort actions by" with the same options. Solved.

:)
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by CorgiGirl View Post
Imagine you spend HOURS working everything up in OF. Except you are working in Project Mode. You have multiple related projects. You like to look at them all at once to get the bigger picture by project. You spend hours and hours getting things JUST RIGHT. Many of your projects span a year or two, so looking at dates by project is silly/not helpful/pointless. Some of your actions within the projects have dates, some don't. The actions all have different contexts.

Phew... 3 hours later and you have the perfect doc, perfectly sorted. So now, all you want to do is get an overview, looking at the projects at once, the upcoming due dates, to get the bigger picture. Being able to see this bigger picture is part of any project management. But guess what, you CAN'T currently do this in planning mode, without PERMANENTLY resorting everything you just spent hours working on. I am using due dates as my example, but obviously this applies to any of the "view" options.
If you're doing a lot of very complex planning, maybe another tool would be a useful complement to OF for you?

IIRC, in the section of GTD where he talks about project planning David Allen says that people planning big projects likely have access to a more complex, specialised project planning tool (that does Gantt charts and the like). While OF certainly can be used to do that sort of complex, multiple-part project planning it's not really designed for it IMHO. For me it's more focussed around managing small projects (the sort of things a non-GTDer wouldn't necessarily think of as a project ;) ) using the GTD "natural planning" model. That, I think, is why the sort of big-picture overview you're looking for is hard in OF.
 
It really doesn't have to do with complex projects - my projects are simple action lists. Half of my projects are personal in nature say house remodeling my cleaning schedule I am talking about the UI for any type of project, big or small. :)

I just want to support the many other users (in many different threads) who have noticed the same discrepancy with the User Interface, and am putting a vote in for sorting actions, in project mode without permanently rearranging them. Many other people have had this similar UI request. :)

It's really not a GTD thing, it's a simple "sort" just like the ones Omni already provides in Context mode, and other sort view methods already available in Planning mode. It's no different than sorting by project, or grouping by a folder, or sorting by flag status.

I am certainly awaiting when OmniPlan and OmniFocus work better together of course and with the iphone :)

I've tried every project management and task management tool out there, I prefer Omni for many reasons. It's a great program, for all sorts of professional and personal projects.
 
Hi,

i agreed with CorgiGirl, an add to the ViewPanel to be able to specify the sort of the individual Actions in a Project.

I also have just personal projects, but i do have around 20, from house stuff, to vacancion organisation. One in particular is a bunch of monthly recurring actions, i set repeat evry 1 month starting from completion date, the project is a parallel one. So i just do the task, mark it completed, and OF create another one with the due date one month from now, but he don't auto sort with the other actions.
To do it i must do the SelectAll -> Sort Due.

Of course all this in the Planning Mode.
I use the OF 1.1 the last one on 26/09

my2c

Ciprian

Last edited by cnicules; 2008-09-26 at 05:37 AM..
 
Hello,

would it be possible to see context as column in a due items perspective? or, in other words,
when is it possible to see context as column?

thanks

Alessandro
 
 


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